The largest global consumer of electricity is the United States. It is reported that the country consumes an estimated 4000 billion kilowatts of electricity annually against a net production of about 4125 billion kilowatts (US Energy Information Administration). About 7% of the electricity is lost of the transmission and distribution process. With the power plants running at an efficiency of around 45%, it means that half of the electricity is during production and distribution. Much of this energy is transformed into heat. Recycling is one of the ways that have been identified to help in curbing the wastage. The recycling of energy entails the recovery of wasted energy through conversion to other useful forms. Large amounts of heat that are produced during the process of generating electricity should be converted to kinetic energy that can still be used in the production process since it produces steam. This can be the most ideal means of saving energy since it is sustainable, efficient and also cost effective.
The petition was aimed at compelling the federal government to adopt the idea of recycling energy in the generation of electricity as a means of cutting down the wastage of energy. In order to ensure that the petition was eligible for review, it had to be supported by over 25,000 signatures. The signatures were collected through an online application known as Petition Spot. The petition became more popular through the social networking sites, like Facebook and Twitter. A fan page called ‘’I Support Energy Recycling’’ was created and people were invited to like it. On the other hand, there was also a Twitter handle, ‘’Recycle-Energy-Now’’ that was started to help in the dissemination of information regarding the petition. In the earlier stages, the petition was used in urging the United States Twitter community to sign it through Petition Spot.
Social networking sites were also used in the operations of the organization. These sites have a huge following and offered an ideal avenue for reaching out to millions of people across America. The supporters received constant updates on the number of people who had signed the petition through these sites. They also received information about the planned activities, hitches and support acquired from influential figures in the business, political, academia, music and social circles. This gave inspiration to others to sign the petition. Supporters were also able to post their submissions and comments regarding the petition through the sites. Feedback on the other hand, was obtained from the supporters according to all the states in the United States. To sum it all up, Facebook and Twitter were the main platforms used in popularizing the petition, passing of information and collecting feedback fast and more affordably.
The petition received massive support as a result of the collective identity. This was achieved through the publication of facts and figures about the US energy on Twitter and Facebook. Users were informed about the country’s energy consumption and the amount that is wasted during the production process. Besides, they also received information about the costs of energy, projections on the consumption growth and the expected challenges in the energy sector in future. This resulted into shared interests, which resulted into collective identity that significantly impacted sustained cohesion among those who supported the petition.
Twitter and Facebook had the features used in conveying personalized information. Links, videos, cartoons and pictures related to the petition were also displayed on the sites through the use of these features. Besides, other media platforms were also used in the reinforcement of the central message and appealing for support. For example, a video showing the impacts of the energy crisis stirred up great emotional appeal that further enhanced the support for the petition.
Within only three days, the petition had attracted more than 25,000 signatures. This means that about 8500 people signed the petition every day. This success was attributed to the effective campaigns on social media. This shows that these social avenues are powerful in influencing change. It was established that messages were very effective when conveyed through the use of cartoons, videos and pictures.
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“U.S. Energy Information Administration – EIA – Independent Statistics and Analysis.” United States. N.p., n.d. Web. 9 Feb. 2014. <http://www.eia.gov/countries/country-data.cfm?fips=US>.